Friday, November 04, 2005

Ant's Friday Rants

Was Shaq drunk last night?

I have to say that this “Premiere Week” in the NBA has been like a Hanukkah of sports for me. Seeing that I’m not Jewish, I’m merely imagining how great it would be to receive presents and celebrate every day for seven nights. But one thing I know for sure is that when the festivities are all over, it’s no more gifts, no more celebration, just back to the daily grind. So what the hell does this have to do with the NBA? Well, get ready for this same sort of letdown to occur in the NBA sometime next week. You see right now we all are receiving the League Pass for free for a week, which is like stumbling across the Spice channel that the cable company has accidentally given to you. And while I’m grateful for this free weeklong trial, I’d almost rather not have it at all. Why? Because next week at this time I’m not going to have a slew of games to come home to, but rather just the Knicks, Nets, and whatever game ESPN decides to show. So why not splurge and get the League Pass package you ask? Well, because I’m a Celtics fan and some genius (and when I say genius I mean bumbling fuck nut) at the NBA decided that because I live in Connecticut (a mere two and a half hours away from Boston) that they would black out the games in my area in hopes that I’ll attend them instead. Well unfortunately my rocket ship is in the shop and won’t be fixed until pigs can fly, so basically I’m screwed out of that deal. But for any of you in my current situation let me offer you a solution. Go get the dish, not only a cheaper alternative than digital cable, but one which provides you with the Fox Sports package for $9.99/month and gives you more than enough NBA games on a given night. That’s what I’m doing this weekend and I suggest you do the same.

Now let’s take a look at some things I liked this past week, along with what managed to crawl under my skin.

(Note: all stats are in the points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks format. Thus If I just write 27, 12, & 6, that means a player had 27 points, 12 boards, and 6 assists.)

PLAYERS I WAS IMPRESSED WITH:

--You have to love the efforts from both Chris Webber (32, 14, 5, 1, 2) and TJ Ford (16, 9, 14) in the Sixers-Bucks game on Tuesday night. Both players, in my opinion, have been going much later than they should in fantasy drafts. Webber, if healthy of course, is a perennial All-Star with 20, 10, 5 capability, yet has been slipping out of the 5th round in countless drafts. Same goes for Ford, who was selected in the closing minutes of my draft but by the looks of it can definitely be a top-10 PG in the league this year. Wake up people, these are solid players that you by-passed for the Kenyon Martins and Jeff McInnis’s of the NBA world.

--If Steve Nash can stay healthy, my God what a season he’s going to have. I know it’s only 2 games, but 21.0 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 13.0 APG, 2.5 SPG—how was this guy so overlooked in fantasy drafts? And by overlooked I mean he usually fell to right around the 12th pick, because numbers like that warrant him as a top-7 player. But the one statistic I left out—41.0 minutes per game, which could eventually plant Nash’s ass on the bench next to the Phoenix Gorilla with that bad back. Speaking of the Gorilla, have you ever wondered how badly that suit must stink? I don’t care how much that guy is making, it wouldn’t be enough for me.

--LeBron James looked awesome on Wednesday knocking down 6-7 from 3. If he’s perfected his shooting now, I don’t know what to expect from him.

--Paul Pierce attempted a career-high 24 free throw against the Knicks en route to a 30-point performance. Too bad he was 6-17 from the floor. All in all though, “The Truth” looks back to his cheerful, All-Star self, at least for one night.

--Rip Hamilton dropped an eye opening 37 points against the Sixers. If he can be that type of scorer this year, Miami and Indy have no chance.

--Oh, and how about Darius Miles? 32, 11, 5, 5, &3? Is that why he was the third pick in the Draft in 2000?

--Brad Miller (after a God-awful performance the previous night) showed signs of his old self in posting 21, 8, & 7 on Wednesday in Houston. He’s going to have to be the anchor of that team as they get through these early season struggles.

--I had to look at the Clippers boxscore 22 times on Thursday morning after seeing 35, 5, & 11 from Sam Cassell. Way to help out KG last year buddy.

--And finally I leave you with arguably the best performance of the week, Dwyane Wade’s 31, 6, & 10 that almost single-handedly brought the Heat all the way back from their double-digit deficit against Indiana on Thursday. With Shaq out for 2-4 weeks now, it’s going to be up to Flash to keep this team winning games.


TEAMS I WAS IMPRESSED BY:

Milwaukee
Obviously the Bucks are the first team that comes to mind. Not only did they manage to come back against a strong Sixer ball club and beat them in overtime, but then the following night they marched into New Jersey and destroyed the Nets. Keep on thinking that I’m overrating the Bucks at 6, but keep in mind that Bill Simmons pegged them 5th in his standings.

San Antonio
I was also very impressed with the Spurs on Opening Night. They seemingly toyed around with the Nuggets for three quarters until they felt good and ready to dismantle them. That 4th quarter looked like San Antonio was going up against a high school team. If this is a remote taste of how they plan on playing this season, watch out because they could honestly eclipse the 70-win mark.

LA Lakers
Even though they’re just 1-1, I’m still very happy with my choice to put the Lakers in the Playoffs. First of all, they actually do have a PG on their roster in the form of Smush Parker (20.5 PPG, 4.0 APG, 2.5 SPG). So far it looks like he’s back in the A-10 playing at Fordham and Phil Jackson and the Lakers couldn’t be happier. Second, Kobe is playing out of his mind and looks primed to have perhaps his best season yet as a pro. And lastly, Lamar Odom (15.5 PPG, 12.5 RPG, 7.5 APG) looks to be much more comfortable under the watchful eye of the Zen Master. If Kwame Brown can get his head out of his ass and realize he’s damn lucky for this second opportunity, this team could goes as far as winning the Pacific.


PLAYERS I HATED:

Kyle Korver being granted a starting spot and averaging just 4.0 PPG and 20.0% from the floor in 26.5 minutes really gets to me. Why the Sixers still believe this kid can be a younger version of Peja is beyond me. Earth to the Sixers: he’s a bench player, not a starter.

Anyone else see the new haircut Manu Ginobili is sporting? He looks like he’s 12 years old now, which subsequently allows me to leave the “Severe Dislike Sector” and enter “Full-blown Hatred Zone 1”. And for all of you that took him in the 4th round or higher, I hope you suffer all year. He’s a sixth round pick at best, evidenced beautifully on opening night with his 10 pts (2-9), 4 rebs, & 3 turnovers in 29 minutes. I don’t like you Emanuel.

Antoine Walker making the Heat believe he’s as good as his 25 points and 16 boards in Memphis the other night really angered me. But no worries, Toine played like his usual self Thursday night by taking ridiculous off-balanced shots after Miami managed to whittle the Pacers’ lead down to three. Why is he allowed on the court during important sequences of games? I mean has he ever watched video tape of himself? Ever? And if he has, how can he not force himself to take better shots on the fast break. It’s really getting out of control now.

I also hated Pau Gasol dropping 26 and 12 after I traded him to Paul last week for ‘Melo. No matter though because Paul and I both made out like bandits. I sent him Gasol for Carmelo and Nene, who I quickly swapped for Al Harrington. So now over a week later, Paul ended up with Gasol for Anthony, which he loves, and I got ‘Melo and Harrington for Gasol. Too bad for my buddy Dan who’s just stuck with one giant torn ACL.


TEAMS I HATED:

Sacramento

How on Earth can you go play a game in Oklahoma City and lose by 26 points to one of the worst teams in the league? The Hornets’ starting lineup consists of two minors, a 36 year-old, David West, and one Bostjan Nachbar, which just happen to be Baskin Robbins’ Flavor of the Month for November.

New Orleans
Then on the other hand, how do you go and beat a legitimate Western Conference Playoff team by 26 then turn around and lose by 22 the very next night? That’s like hooking up with a Denver Broncos cheerleader on Friday night, then Saturday sleeping with the weird girl who spends her whole night eating the peanuts at the bar.

New Jersey
Taking a 12-point lead into the second quarter then end up losing by 14 to a team that just played in overtime the night before? Is this team going to play any defense this year? If not someone else is going to take the Atlantic.

Charlotte
They held a 21-point lead entering the 4th quarter and not only relinquished it, but let Erik Piatkowski of all people drop 11 of the Bulls’ 30 points. Surrendering a lead like that is one thing, but when you make a 35 year-old balding white man look like a 3-point assassin, you wonder why you’re pencilled in as the favorites for the 15th seed.


Looking Ahead…


BEST GAMES OF THE WEEKEND

Cleveland @ San Antonio, Friday 8 PM
--A season ago the Spurs swept the season series from the Cavs, but this is a much better Cleveland team. LeBron James comes into Texas with a big goal in mind, saying recently that he thinks his current ball club could win 50+ games. Here’s your first big test Bronnie.

San Antonio @ Dallas, Saturday 8:30 PM
--Dallas, known for their stellar play at home, will host a Spurs team playing their second tough match-up in as many nights. Could the Champs get their first loss of the season this early?

Miami @ Milwaukee, Saturday 8:30 PM
--Despite probably being without Shaq, the Heat come into Milwaukee looking to knock off a very hungry Bucks team. The home team should be well rested with their last game coming Wednesday night in New Jersey.

Denver @ LA Lakers, Sunday 9:30 PM
--A rematch of Wednesday night’s thriller that Kobe won at the buzzer. The Nuggets are undoubtedly in the dumps after receiving news that Nene is out for the year. But expect them to give the Lake Show a run for their money as the weekend comes to a close.


WORST GAMES OF THE WEEKEND

Atlanta @ LA Clippers, Friday 10:30 PM
--Is it possible to turn in a negative television rating? I’d almost be willing to bet that no more than 7 people on the East Coast will tune into this game. Atlanta held a double-digit lead in the first half on Wednesday @ Golden State only to lose 122-97! How is that even possible? Did they only have 3 guys on the floor in the 4th quarter? I’d rather watch a kitten use a litter box for 2 hours than watch this.

Atlanta @ Portland, Saturday, 10:00 PM
--I hate to rip Atlanta again (no I don’t), but this game could get ugly. These could be the two worst teams in the NBA and I’d be shocked if more than 60% of the arena gets filled. I feel awful for anyone forced to watch this game.


BEST NOT-SO-OBVIOUS FANTASY PICK-UPS

Chris Duhon (CHI)—Hinrich looks to be out for at least a few games and building off of his first career trip-dub, I expect Duhon to be a very solid option for the next week or so.

Antonio Davis (NYK)—the veteran played 34 minutes the other night in a loss at Boston, scoring 9 points to go along with 7 rebounds and 2 steals. Starting for this high-scoring Knicks squad, AD could provide a necessary boost to get your team the W this week.

John Salmons (PHI)—This isn’t necessarily a buy now candidate, just a player to keep an eye on. With Korver playing worse than that fat guy in Teen Wolf there’s a good chance he could be moved to the bench. The best option would then to bring Salmons off the pine to play alongside Iverson. Could happen as early as tonight…

Alonzo Mourning (MIA)—Hey, Shaq’s out 2-4 weeks and Zo’s starting at center. 10 and 8 with 2 blocks seem like very achievable averages.


BEST MOVIES TO SEE THIS WEEKEND

"Jarhead"
Movie about a young man in his 20s (Jake Gyllenhal) going overseas to fight the War in Iraq. Co-stars Jamie Foxx (who looks to play an awesome part in the previews), Chris Cooper (gay father in American Beauty), and Peter Sarsgaard. The director is Sam Mendes, the same guy who directed American Beauty, one of my ten favorite movies of all time. Go check it out, should be an immediate classic.

"Saw II"
This is the one movie you may want to wear one of those adult diapers to. The first one was pretty damn scary and the second is supposed to be even better, or so I’ve heard. Actually you know what? I hate when people say that. "They say it’s better than the first one." Oh really? Who’s they? The Saw II committee? Unless I see it for myself, I’m not making anymore judgements from now on.

"Chicken Little"
Sure it’s rated G, but it looks pretty damn funny. If a little Disney chicken isn’t funny, then honestly, what is? Great movie to take a girl to, I presume.


BEST WEEK 9 NFL BETS

Minnesota +2 over Detroit
--Everyone will expect the Vikings to be in the dumps after all the shit they’ve been through this season, most recently losing Dante Culpepper for the season. But that’s exactly what Vegas wants you to think.

Tampa Bay +2 over Carolina
--Okay, Carolina smoked Minny last week and Tampa lost to San Fran, one of the worst teams in football over the last ten years. Is there any legitimate reason to not pick the Panthers? Exactly why you go with Tampa. Makes no sense, talk to me on Monday.


Good Luck to all and have a great weekend.

7 Comments:

At 6:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i tried that thing with buying fox sports - don't fall for it - they black out the nba games b/c you are supposed to buy the nba package, and it is hard to cancel b/c they jack u up on price if you quit a part. just fyi.

 
At 6:27 PM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

HOW DOES THAT MAKE ANY SENSE? So that means if I remain living where I am now it's IMPOSSIBLE to watch the Boston Celtics? I'm not trying to get a private webcam into the room of Rachel Bilson (yes I am), I just wanna watch the Celtics for God's sake. I hate the NBA. I quit this site.

 
At 6:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

im with you dude - but ask when you call. i got burned - i thought i had outwitted them and all i get is alot of blackouts, rodeo, and b-league college ball. u get the celtics buy plunking down the 169 for the nba package i guess. go wizards.

 
At 12:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i'm glad someone else said it : kyle korver sucks!

he got owned in the playoffs last year, he's a decent shooter who can't create his own shot or make a shot that isn't a 3

thank goodness the sixers locked him up

 
At 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

nbasource.com fucked my sister

 
At 6:46 PM, Blogger Anthony Peretore said...

At the same time? Eiffel Tower style? Man, we must of been hammered huh? I don't remember that, you Paul?

 
At 1:32 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Good call on Jarhead. Best movie I've seen in awhile.

 

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